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"The President's Own"

United States Marine Band

Colonel Jason K. Fettig, Director
Unit News
Free Country at the Capitol

By Staff Sgt. Brian Rust | | June 16, 2014

The Marine Band’s contemporary country music ensemble, Free Country, will perform popular country hits and classics, patriotic favorites, and original works at 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 18, and Thursday, June 19, on the west terrace of the U.S. Capitol. Free Country offers performances that include humor and reflection while always paying tribute to the men and women in uniform through songs about the American experience. Both concerts are free and no tickets are required.

The program will include country favorites such as Charlie Daniels’ “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” and “Sold” by John Michael Montgomery as well as several pa­triotic tunes, including Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless the USA,” Toby Keith’s “American Soldier,” and “It’s America” by Rodney Atkins.

“We are always trying to maintain a connection to current country artists while never forgetting those older songs that have helped shape modern country songs or that are simply timeless classics,” said Master Gun­nery Sgt. Peter Wilson, fiddler and group leader. “Country music tells a story—the American story—through song, and the styles of these songs are as diverse as the people of our great nation.”

The group will also perform songs by country artists Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Kellie Pickler, Jason Aldean, Tim McGraw, and Lonestar.

"We are committed to making our concerts fun and family oriented, while encouraging audiences to sing along and help us celebrate America,” added Wilson.

Along with Wilson, Free Country includes bassist Master Sgt. Aaron Clay, percussionist Master Sgt. David Murray, keyboardist Gunnery Sgt. AnnaMaria Mottola, vocalist Master Sgt. Kevin Bennear, and guitarists Gunnery Sgts. Alan Prather, and Brian Turnmire.

The FREE outdoor performances are weather permitting and subject to change. In case of inclement weather, con­cert cancellations will be announced by 6 p.m. on the 24-hour Concert Information Line at (202) 433-4011.

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